Wednesday, 11 March 2015

The magical motocross tour

The Lockyer Valley Regional Councillors are off on a tour this morning that will take in the Queensland Moto Park motocross operation at Wyaralong between Boonah and Beaudesert and the motocross track at Adare.

We did up a brief 'tour guide' for them, suggesting aspects of both sites that they might want to have a good look at or ask questions about.  You can download the tour guide here.

They'll have a much better trip out to the proposed Adare motocross development site than most people do.  The Council had a crew out there on Tuesday and Wednesday with a grader, roller, dump truck and a ute with a herbicide sprayer, and eight staff including the drivers and the traffic controllers.

Smoother, cleaner but still dangerous - check out that blind crest in the background.
 The workers said that they had been told the work was in preparation for a mountain bike event, and that they had to be off the road by 2.30pm yesterday.  In fact, there is a mountain bike event at Adare Homestead, but it's not until Sunday.  They were actually on site until 12.30pm today, Thursday 12 March.  They must have meant that they had to be out of there by 2.30pm today, because that's about the time the Councillors would be getting back from their visit to Wyaralong.. But the road has been graded, gravelled, rolled and buffed better than most unsealed roads in the Lockyer Valley Region.  Either the Queen is going mountain-biking on Sunday or this is all for the Councillors.

Actually we were out on Adare Road on the day of Race 1 of the Wild West Enduro Series  at Adare Homestead on 11 January this year. There were more than 150 riders at that, from Toowoomba, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Townsville and Armidale. Not a minor event, but there was no evidence of any roadwork having been done on Adare Road in preparation it.

Even the weeds were getting a wash.  Wonder if they polished the road signs too?
This is what the Redbank Creek crossing looked like last time with the mountain bike traffic.

You can see a video of the dust problem on the unsealed section between the crossing and the proposed motocross track entrance on the day of the January mountain bike Enduro event here.

Even if the roadworks were being done in preparation for the mountain bike event at Adare Homestead some questions need to be asked about the cost of the operation and the reason this bit of road got priority.

There are only two houses served by the section of road that was upgraded.  Coles Road, also in Adare and running off Redbank Creek Road, is only two kilometres long, is unsealed and serves four houses.  It's currently a rough, rutted and narrow track.  Residents have been trying for a long time, without any success to get Council to do some maintenance work on this road.  The money and effort put into this bit of Adare Road would have made a substantial improvement to Coles Road.

The Council might argue that the Adare Homestead mountain bike operation is providing an economic benefit to the Lockyer Valley Region, but if they did it would be interesting to see a justification.  Here's what prospective competitors at a 2013 event were told about the site:

Venue address: Adare Homestead, 583 Adare Road Gatton. Adare Homestead is located at the end of Adare Rd. Approximately 10 kilometres north of Gatton township and 70 minutes from the CBD.

Directions from the East: From Brisbane travel west out the Warrego Highway towards Toowoomba. Take the Gatton exit and follow Eastern Drive, right onto Old College Road, turn right into Allan Street, at the bottle shop, go straight ahead into Adare Road and head north. The sealed road ends and continue north on the gravel road over the causeway to Adare Homestead.

From the West: Travel east along the Warrego Highway towards Brisbane. At the end of Gatton Bypass, exit head into Gatton and follow the same directions as above. 

i.e. no one needs to go through the Gatton CBD, or even past any food outlets to get to the venue. (These are the same directions that would be needed to get to the proposed motocross operation on Adare Road.)

What to bring. Bring all the items required to support your race including track pump, spares, sunscreen, shade shelter (pop up tent), table, chairs, food and water (cup of cement is optional). Don't to forget to bring all your riding kit and a sense of humour!
We provide limited water, ablutions and mechanic service. If you run into trouble, you can purchase sports nutrition, tubes and spares from Sheryl from MTB Mechanic.

People are told to bring their own food and everything else they might need.  Water is available on site, as are a mechanic service, sports nutrition, tubes and spares. The accompanying map showed a site labelled 'coffee', so presumably that essential is also provided.  What reason would patrons have to to into Gatton for anything?

If the roadworks were for the benefit of the mountain bike operation and not just to give the Councillors a better impression of the access to proposed motocross facility, where is the economic justification for the expenditure of public money?

Me?  I think it was all to make the motocross operation look good for the Councillors - at public expense.

1 comment:

  1. It does make me see red.. I am one of the four houses in the 'other' part of Coles road. Adare. It was last graded in 2011 by counsel.

    When asked to redo our road, we were told " LVRC only has one grader which is busy". I wonder what it was doing?